Week 10 – Vanderbilt at Kentucky

Posted Nov 2, 2012

Week 10 Fearless Predictions - Vanderbilt at Kentucky


Vanderbilt (4-4) at Kentucky (1-8) Nov. 3, 12:00, ESPNU

Here's The Deal: Normally Vanderbilt vs. Kentucky would be a battle for the basement of the SEC East, and it still could be if the Commodores collapse, but things are different now. Vandy has been competitive and tough in a nice run of three wins in four weeks, but at 4-4 with three of the final four games on the road, getting the two wins needed to go bowling isn't a sure thing. If the Commodores can't get by the hapless Wildcats this week, it's going to be tough to get to six wins.

Kentucky's season was all but over long ago, but the lone win over Kent State back in early September looks a lot stronger now than it did at the time. That's little consolation for a seven-game losing streak thanks to a miserable offense that's averaging just 18 points per game, and a defense that's getting picked apart by anyone who can throw a forward pass. Beating Vanderbilt would hardly be something to get excited about, but in a season without any thrills, it would be a nice moment with the potential to lead to a two-game winning streak with Samford up next.

Why Vanderbilt Might Win: The Kentucky passing attack is going to be in for a long, long day. Injuries and inconsistencies have been a problem for a Wildcat offense that can't seem to find anyone who can move the chains, with Jalen Whitlow completing 9-of-18 passes last week for 76 yards against Missouri, while Patrick Towles completed just one of four passes for two yards. On the season, UK has thrown for just 1,598 yards with 11 touchdowns and nine picks, but on the positive side, the O hasn't given away any interceptions in the last four games. Vanderbilt is fifth in the nation in passing and 12th in pass efficiency defense, allowing just 151 yards per game. UK doesn't have the running game to pick up the slack.

Why Kentucky Might Win: It's not like the Vanderbilt offense is blowing the doors off of anyone but UMass. The Commodores had no problems last week against the struggling Minutemen, but overall the offense can't seem to put up points on the board with just 56 in the previous four games. That might be acceptable against Georgia and Florida, but Vandy couldn't get things working against Missouri or Auburn, either. On the year, the 19 points were the most scored against anyone but UMass and Presbyterian, and it could be even tougher to move the ball unless …

What To Watch Out For: Zac Stacy is fine and running. He left the UMass game early, but he's expected to play and be more than just effective against a Wildcat defense that should get gouged. While he hasn't blown up, running for 683 yards and five scores after running for 1,193 yards and 14 scores last season, but he has been great against the Wildcats with 135 yards and three touchdowns in the 38-8 victory. Jordan Rodgers picked up the slack when Stacy was out, completing 17-of-21 passes for 217 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for a score.

What Will Happen: Vanderbilt will rumble without a problem. The defense will stop the Wildcat offense from making this interesting, while the steady production from Stacy and the offense will do enough to get up early and stay comfortably ahead.

CFN Prediction: Vanderbilt 28 … Kentucky 13
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) Vanderbilt -7 O/U: 46
Must Watch Rating (5 – The Man With The Iron Fists, 1 – Election coverage until Tuesday morning): 2